Archives for June 2011

The Beach Is A Cool Science Experiment

cool science experimentsI was sitting on  the beach the other day …watching all the activity going on around, remembering how much fun my kids had and for that matter the beach days I had as a kid when visiting my grandmother in Florida, and it occurred to me what I seeing was fun and  pretty cool science experiments going on everywhere I looked!

The best thing was the kids, and parents, were just having fun, but were using their understanding of science and how a good experiment works, and were not even aware that is what they were doing?

  1. Where you set up and put your stuff totally depends on the tides and understanding how far it came up yesterday, the weather patterns of today.
  2. When you jump waves, or use your boogie board, it is one massive experiment to learn to judge the best time to jump or ride the wave in. As the day goes on, from your “experiment” you get better at it!
  3. Building a sand castle, or a wall, or anything in the sand is a lesson in architecture principles and the art of a good foundation. Nobody tells the kids to shore up the bottom, they figure it out.  Have you ever listened to the chatter amongst kids as they work together on one of those things?  Try this,  lets do that..  such cool science experiments they don’t even know they are doing!
  4. All it takes is one storm to see what erosion can do, the beach near me has dunes half the size of two years ago due to huge storms.  The signs about the importance of beach grass to the dunes is living example of science!
  5. Even without the storm just standing in one place in the water shows you eroision  as your feet sink deeper and the sand move around you.s
  6. We learn about the difference between onshore and ocean breezes and why we prefer the ocean breeze… yes it is cooler, but it also keeps the black biting flies away!
  7. Once July comes the sea nettles show up which is a whole new topic to learn about, but in the meantime you can find all sorts of little creatures and the shells of creatures and gain some more insight.
  8. Hydration becomes the topic of converstaion and you feel your body needing water and how fast it loses it in the heat. I don;t know about you but youy experiment with bringing frozen watr bottle, water coolers filled with ice, should you use sugar drinks or not all become science experiments.
  9. Reflection of light becomes a topic to learn about for a couple of things, that famous sunburn on the back of your legs from the water, how hot the sand gets, wearing light colors and which umbrellas keeps the sun out the best.
  10. Finally, if you are lucky you will get to watch some dolphins swim up and down the shoreline, and that is just plain cool.


There are some cool science experiments  that you could use at home this summer just as a fun activity. Science really is going on all around you, and kids really are interested!

Try these demonstration project ideas,

for a quick, summer project that can be done in a day….

Simple Science Fair Projects and The Power of Observation

Observe the World Around You and You Will Find  Great Simple Science Fair Projects

simple science experimentsOne of the important steps in choosing  some simple science fair projects  is to observe your environment and pose questions and then make predictions. Then you follow the steps to a good scientific experiment  using the scientific method, and explore it and either prove or disprove your predictions.

Doesn’t this sound so simple?

Simple that is until it is your kid sitting there saying, “I don’t know what to do…” or “I don’t know what they mean to look around….” One of the problems is everyone over thinks this step and thinks it has to be some fancy science concept, rather than a simple question you probably have asked a million times yourself, without realizing it is the seed to a great, quick and easy science fair project.

Here is a perfect example of finding simple science fair projects where the topic is definitely something that interests all kids and then you experiment with it:

What is something all kids like and teachers do everything possible to keep it out o school?

So what can you do with gum? Here is one experiment I saw online:

  • Study what the different temperatures of water does to the gum.

Hopefully you can see the makings of a great project, and how cool the charts and display will look when you are finished.

  • You pick one type/brand of gum to begin with.
  • Make a list of the attributes taste, can you bend it, ease of chewing, how long the flavor lasts, can you blow bubbles, and whatever the kids come up with.
  • Then with cold, warm, hot and boiling water keep track of the difference it makes with each attribute and chart it. You should be able to make a conclusion on what water does to gum at these temperatures.


  • Once you do that, older students might want to take it a step further and expand and do the same thing with different brands, sugarless, fruit flavored, bubble gum, gum balls, etc to see if it does the same thing to all gum, or whatever.

How fun the display board will look with all those different types of gum and the charts!

This is a simple example of looking in your environment, posing a question and experimenting with it. It is quick, simple and a great way to learn how to use the steps to the scientific method, without even realizing it.

When you think about it, you run into these simple little questions all the time, particularly in the kitchen. Does hot or cold water make the brownies better? How fast do ice cubes melt in different temperatures? Which brands of bread molds faster? and Does putting it in the refrigerator do any good? These are the kinds of questions that come up all the time and make great science fair projects.

Discover a great source with a supply of these quick, simple science fair projects that are kid tested and teacher approved with this link.